UN Security Council deplores use of violence against peaceful demonstrators in Myanmar

The full text of the UN Security Council statement on Myanmar, 11 Oct 07 (emphasis mine):

The Security Council welcomes the recent mission by the Secretary-General’s Special Adviser to Myanmar Mr. Ibrahim Gambari, reaffirms its strong and unwavering support for the Secretary-General’s good offices mission as mandated by General Assembly resolution 61/232, and expresses its appreciation for the personal engagement of the Secretary-General.

The Security Council strongly deplores the use of violence against peaceful demonstrations in Myanmar and welcomes Human Rights Council resolution S-5/1 of 2 October 2007. The Security Council emphasizes the importance of the early release of all political prisoners and remaining detainees. It also calls on the Government of Myanmar and all other parties concerned to work together towards a de-escalation of the situation and a peaceful solution.

The Security Council stresses the need for the Government of Myanmar to create the necessary conditions for a genuine dialogue with Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and all concerned parties and ethnic groups, in order to achieve an inclusive national reconciliation with the direct support of the United Nations. The Security Council encourages the Government of Myanmar to consider seriously Mr. Gambari’s recommendations and proposals. The Security Council also calls on the Government of Myanmar to take all necessary measures to address the political, economic, humanitarian, and human rights issues that are the concern of its people and emphasizes that the future of Myanmar lies in the hands of all of its people.

The Security Council welcomes the Government of Myanmar’s public commitment to work with the United Nations and the appointment of a liaison officer with Daw Aung San Suu Kyi. The Security Council stresses the importance that such commitments are followed by action. It acknowledges that the Government of Myanmar had invited Mr. Gambari to Myanmar. It underscores its support for his return as early as possible, in order to facilitate concrete actions and tangible results. The Security Council urges the Government of Myanmar and all parties concerned to cooperate fully with Mr. Gambari.

The Security Council welcomes the important role played by the ASEAN countries in urging restraint, calling for a peaceful transition to democracy, and supporting the good offices mission. It notes that the good offices mission is a process, and encourages the sustained support and engagement of the international community in helping Myanmar.

The Security Council remains seized of the matter.

This marks a significant shift in China and Russia’s stance on issues such as this — growing evidence that relentless pressure and campaigning against the Myanmar junta and its supporters does have an effect.

Author: Gerald Giam

Gerald Giam is the Member of Parliament for Aljunied GRC. He is a member of the Workers' Party of Singapore. The opinions expressed on this page are his alone.

One thought on “UN Security Council deplores use of violence against peaceful demonstrators in Myanmar”

  1. The security council, ASEAN and the powers that be, can condemn Burma all they like and initiate further sanctions, but these will not have any effect; not with the backing of China. After all, the Chinese provided the $2 billion in arms to the Tatmadaw after ’88 that propped up the regime even as it was failing.

    What might nudge China into action is if political bodies like ASEAN dust off the 1947 Constitution of the Union of Burma and start to examine Chapter 10, clause 201 which provides for secession of the other states like the Kachin, Shan or the Karen. This should greatly alarm China.

    The 1947 agreement of union took a number of states which were essentially British and federated them into the Union of Burma. Logically if this agreement is set aside (it was, by Ne Win), then these native states should revert to pre-independence status and thus have a right to self determination. At least this is the view that some of my friends from these regions hold.

    If political bodies like ASEAN or the UN begin to look at the possibility of independent Chin, Kachin, Karen and Shan nations, as provided for by the original 1947 Constitution, this could launch China into a dilemma for such nations could potentially form an unfriendly buffer zone between Yunnan and South Asia and South East Asia, blocking their ambitions to access to the Indian Ocean..

    If something like this were furthermore strongly backed by ASEAN, China might have to balance its long term relationship with ASEAN against its relationship with the Tatmadaw and see which it holds more important. Odds are, a much freer but still unified authoritarian Burma, something like Vietnam, would be better than the alternative of a Balkanised Burma.

    Already the result of the flow of heroin and HIV to southern China must elicit some level of anger to their authorities. With the Burmese now reportedly increasing their opium crop (and with that an intended implied increased flow of drugs to the west), its likely that the Chinese will see this with irritation – plus the prospect of new nations on their southern border might trigger them to promote a more benevolent regime in Burma.

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